Ethyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Alcohol, Teeth Bleaching and the Mouth
Under most circumstances moderate consumption of alcohol (ethyl alcohol, ethanol) poses no risk to oral health. However, when that consumption goes above what can be considered moderate that we can start to see issues arise.
Excessive consumption of alcohol poses a host of risks that are fairly well known to most people, including heart disease, liver damage, and high blood pressure. What many people don’t know is that excessive consumption can also lead to many oral health issues. These can include, but are not limited to:
- Swollen gums
- Reduced salivary output
- Tooth decay
- Reoccurring infections
- Oral cancer
To mitigate these issues, the most important step is reducing alcohol consumption down to healthy levels. If assistance is needed for this, there are many helpful social programs.
On a related topic, it has come to our attention that many kids are turning to using rubbing alcohol in some home teeth whitening techniques. Kids who are looking at rubbing alcohol might think that it is the same stuff that they see their parents drink, but that is a dangerous misconception. Rubbing alcohol is a distinctly different form of alcohol from drinking alcohol, which is ethanol, as opposed to isopropanol. Isopropanol, when consumed in even small amounts, can prove fatal. Even if it is not directly consumed by swallowing the liquid, it is easily absorbed through the gums, which can lead to gum death as well as other issues (dizziness, headache, nausea, slurring of speech, and potentially death). We would ask that you check to make sure that your children know the risks of ingesting such a harmful substance.